Thursday, September 29, 2011, 7 pm
Tragedy’s Philosophy: Philosophy's Tragedy

Lecture by Simon Critchley (New York) as part of the series "What is Philosophy?"

Simon Critchley’s thought is that philosophy as a discursive invention, beginning with Plato, but extending across the millennia into the present, is premised on the exclusion of tragedy and the exclusion of a range of experiences we can call tragic. Critchley suggests that this exclusion of tragedy is itself tragic, and this is arguably philosophy’s tragedy. He wants to defend tragedy against philosophy, or in other words, argues that tragedy articulates a philosophical view that challenges the authority of philosophy by giving voice to what is contradictory, constricted, precarious, and limited about us.

Simon Critchley (b. 1960) is a professor of philosophy at the New School for Social Research, New York, and chief philosopher of the International Necronautical Society. He is also a visiting professor at the University of Sydney and the University of Notre Dame, USA. He studied at the University of Essex and Université de Nice Sophia-Antipolis. Selected publications:
Impossible Objects (Cambridge: Polity Press, 2011); On Humour (London: Routledge, 2002); Continental Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press, 2001); The Ethics of Deconstruction: Derrida and Levinas (Edinburgh University Press, 1992).

In English language

The complete series
What is Philosophy? is documented in a DVD-set and available at n.b.k.